You can get a permit of stay for job-seekers ('permesso di soggiorno per attesa occupazione' in Italian) if your permesso di soggiorno per motivi di lavoro (work permit) expired and you are looking for a new job in Italy. You can get this permit also if you hold a permesso per motivi di studio (study permit) but you are about to graduate and so you need to convert your permit of stay while you seek for employment.
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Who is eligible
You could apply for permesso per attesa occupazione if:
- Your work permit is expiring and you cannot renew it because you no longer have a job
- Your study permit is expiring and/or you graduated from university or completed your PhD, and you still do not have a job
In both cases, you will also have to be registered in the employment lists (‘liste di collocamento’ in Italian) of the employment center (‘Centro per l’Impiego’ in Italian, or CPI) where you live, and get the document of immediate availability to work (‘Dichiarazione di Immediata Disponibilità al Lavoro’ in Italian, or DID).
You may also be granted a permesso per attesa occupazione even if your employer is suddenly unable to offer you employment, and consequently cannot deliver the application procedure for a permesso per motivi di lavoro.
How to apply
Registration with the CPI
A centro per l’impiego (CPI) is a regional public office that helps job seekers in finding a job, matching their profiles with job offers available in their databases, depending on the educational and professional background of the job seeker. If you wish to find out the closest CPI to where you live, you can search for ‘Centro per l’impiego + the city where you live’ (for example: Centro per l’impiego Milano).
To register with the Centro per l’Impiego and get the DID - needed to request you permesso per attesa occupazione - you need:
- Codice fiscale
- Permesso di soggiorno
- Identity document (such as passport, travel document or Italian ID)
If you have lost your job, you may receive the unemployment allowance Naspi if you are registered in the liste di collocamento of the employment center and meet other requirements.
If you hold a permesso per motivi di lavoro, and you lose your job as a result of dismissal or resignation, you must go, within 40 days from the date of termination of employment, to the employment center of your city and make a statement ('dichiarazione di immediata disponibilità al lavoro' in Italian) attesting the work activity previously carried out and the immediate availability to find a new job, consequently registering in the list for job seekers ('liste di collocamento' in Italian).
We suggest applying for the permesso per attesa occupazione even if registration in the lists of the employment center was done beyond the prescribed 40 days.
If you hold a permesso per motivi di studio, you must also register in the lists of the employment center. You can register in the employment lists for a period not exceeding twelve months, and after the registration you can request for the conversion of the permesso per motivi di studio into a permesso per attesa occupazione.
Learn more on: UNIVERSITY IN ITALY
Application for the permesso
If you hold a work permit and you lose your job, your work permit will remain valid until its expiration date. In this case, if you cannot find another job, you must submit the application for permesso per attesa occupazione starting from 60 days before the expiration date of your permesso per motivi di lavoro using the yellow postal kit.
If your permit of stay has already expired, it is necessary to apply for a permesso per attesa occupazione directly booking an appointment at the Questura in your city, explaining why the application for issuance of this permit was not submitted earlier.
If you hold a permesso di soggiorno per motivi di studio, you can convert your permit of stay into a permesso per attesa occupazione. You must apply for a permesso per attesa occupazione before your study permit expires, so immediately after your graduation or the end of your PHD.
In addition to forms 1 and 2 of the yellow kit, other documents to include are:
- Copy of your permit of stay
- Copy of your passport
- Copy of DID (‘dichiarazione di immediata disponibilità al lavoro) released by the Centro per l’Impiego
- Proof of your income (for example, balance account, CUD or dichiarazione dei redditi) - it must be equal or higher than the yearly social security check
- Residence certificate, declaration of hospitality or rental contract
- 4 passport photos
The total cost of applying for a permesso per attesa occupazione is 116.46€:
- 30.46€ for the issuance of your titolo di soggiorno in electronic format
- 30€ at the post office for the cost of delivery of the postal kit to the Questura
- 40€ for the issuance of the one-year permit of stay
- 16€ for the revenue stamp ('marca da bollo' in Italian)
The post office will issue a receipt of the kit, of the payment, and your appointment with Questura. The receipt that the post office will issue following the submission of your application is very important. Indeed, together with the expired permit of stay, it serves as a valid permit of stay in the waiting period of the issuance of your new permit of stay, only with some limitations regarding your travel rights. In addition, you can use the receipt to check whether your permit of stay is ready on portaleimmigrazione or poliziadistato.
How long is it valid for?
The competent Questura, upon the expiration of your permesso per motivi di lavoro or permesso per motivi di studio, issues a permesso per attesa occupazione valid for minimum one year, or more than one year, until the end of the duration of your unemployment benefit.
Can I renew or convert this kind of permesso?
This permit of stay may be renewed, at the end of the period foreseen for the unemployment benefit, if you are part of a family unit ('nucleo famigliare' in Italian) already settled in Italy, and with at least one person who has sufficient economic resources for all the family members. The minimum income required is the income required for family reunification, which for 2023 is €6,542.51 euros. Please note that Italy's Ministry of Interior in 2016 clarified that renewal of a permesso per attesa occupazione is also possible more than one time, as by law there is no maximum renewal limit. Therefore, it is up to the Questura to evaluate on a case-by-case basis, paying particular attention to family ties, the number of years spent in Italy and criminal records. So, when evaluating an application for a renewal, the Questura should keep in mind the applicant's level of 'social integration’ acquired in Italian society.
In the meantime, if you find a new job before or right after the end of your unemployment benefit or the one-year expiration date of the permesso per attesa occupazione, you will be able to convert this permit in a permesso per motivi di lavoro (work permit) again. Please note that if you undertake any employment and unsubscribe from the lists of the employment center ('Centro per l'impiego' in Italian) while holding the permesso per attesa occupazione, the one-year validity of this permit will be interrupted as you will have another type of permit (in this case, a work permit).
If you lose your job again, you can re-register in the employment lists and apply again for a new pemesso per attesa occuopazione, restarting the whole process from the beginning. Therefore, this new permesso per attesa occupazione valid for minimum one year, or more than one year, until the end of the duration of your unemployment benefit.
If you do not find a new job and do not have sufficient economic resources, you will be forced to leave the country and the trip back to your country of origin must be paid for by your last employer.
Alternatively, if you meet the requirements, you can apply to the Questura for a permesso per protezione speciale.
What rights do I have with this kind of permesso?
As an holder of permesso per attesa occupazione, you have the right to:
- Work in Italy
- Travel outside of Italy
- Access the Italian health care system (SSN)
- Access the Italian public education system
- Access the Italian welfare system, depending on which benefit you seek
- Register with the registry office of your local comune, which gives you the right to get a carta d’identità
- Apply for the Permesso UE per Soggiornanti di Lungo Periodo to work or study in another European country, after 5 years of living in Italy and if you meet the requirements.
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